COVID church risk assessments data update

Here are the latest charts

Case numbers are continuing to rise at the moment

UK new cases by day reported

Although comparing this week with last week is made a little challenging due to the distortion to reporting caused by the Bank holiday weekend. Notice the spike in case growth caused by the Monday and Tuesday comparisons.

It is also worth noting that case increase has been driven by England’s data which may well be accounted for by festival driven infection among the young still working through the system and the increased testing associated with school term recommencing.

Again, the Bank-holiday weekend distorted the data and I suspect that real case growth is comparable to what we saw in mid August following the Board Masters festival in the West Country. This should be encouraging for two reasons. First of all, it doesn’t look like we are seeing a repeat of the eye watering exponential growth rates experienced north of the border a few weeks back and secondly, in line with the Scottish pattern and the follow on from Board Masters we may well expect to see that growth slow and even return to negative figures over the next couple of weeks.

This is what the Scottish case data looks like

As mentioned, we have also seen cases contract in Wales and Northern Ireland too.

Hospital Admissions have continued to increase. However, the ratio of admissions to cases has improved, returning to around about 2.8%

This means that admissions are averaging 958 per day at the moment. I’ve adjusted my projection to account for the new admission ratio and believe we may expect admissions to increase to around about 1090 by mid September.

Deaths have been continuing to increase. Though remain significantly below the highs that we saw in previous waves.

On the basis of the current data and projections I would not advice any major changes to risk assessments and therefore to risk management plans. In other words, it is prudent for churches to continue to make cautious progress in re-opening for in person activities. It should be possible to encourage singing and mask wearing may well be a reduced priority now providing that this is mitigated by ensuring good ventilation and continuing to limit capacity to allow greater spacing. Churches would be wise to monitor the local and national situation regarding cases, admissions and deaths. This may well include taking responsibility as far as possible to track incidents of COVID-19 within the congregation.

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